Title: Without Control
Author: Diebin
Email: diebin@hotmail.com
Fandom: X-Men (Movie)
Rating: PG-13
Summary: Learning control can be hard.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything. Literally.
Warning: I don't have things betad. All mistakes are my own. And so proud of them, I am.
Thanks to: Caeryn and Shana, for getting me so gosh darn hooked. Again.

"Riyan, just hold up a second."

Riyan came to a sliding halt, craning her neck around to search for Kevin in the crowd. He wasn't far behind, having paused at a side shop to look over a display of rather pricey watches. Shrugging one shoulder, Riyan turned around and headed back up the street, weaving through the crowd awkwardly. Even after years of visiting the city, she was horribly uncomfortable around people--especially the crush of the streets.

She was still a few paces away from Kevin when he let out a hollow scream, arching backwards with a terrifying spasm. His face drained of blood as he slowly crumpled to the ground, revealing a short man behind him holding a bloody knife.

The man smiled at Riyan, snatched Kevin's wallet, and took off running. The small man wove his way deftly through the crowd, disappearing easily from sight.

"Kevin!" A small circle of space had appeared around the older boy, and Riyan threw herself to her knees, gathering Kevin up into her arms. "Someone call an ambulance! Please!"

A few passersby paused, looking sympathetic. Most kept on walking.

One reached for a cell phone and dialed 911.

Kevin was moaning, blood seeping from the wound in his side. "Ri--" he whispered, his face scrunching up. "Gods, it hurts."

"Shhh." Riyan stared down at Kevin's distorted face, her heart aching. She had to do something. She wanted to do something.

She could do something.

But she didn't know if it was worth the price. Four years ignoring the twisting heat that lived inside her had lead to such unholy caution . . . and she still couldn't control it all the time. But living out on the farm, by herself, at least she could hide it.

If Kevin found out what she was, he'd hate her.

Or she could keep on hiding . . . and he'd die.

Riyan moaned with the inner conflict--but the decision was already made. That insidious heat--whatever it was--was already rising. She could feel the pressure building, feel the inevitable conclusion. If she didn't surrender to it now, the result would be the same. Once the heat invaded, there was no stopping it.

Letting out a harsh cry, Riyan clamped her hands on Kevin's temples and threw her head back, her hood slipping off her head as her hair trailed down her back.

Kevin arched his back again, letting out a hissing breath. Before his body settled to the ground again, the gathered crowd had already taken a few steps back, several making a warding motion against evil in the direction of Riyan.

On the edge of the crowd, a cell phone fell to the ground, shattering as it bounced off the curb. Farther back, someone whispered, "God protect us."

Kevin sat up, his eyes dazed. One trembling hand slid down to pull his shirt up, and long fingers brushed over unmarred skin--skin which had been lacerated only moments before.

Riyan huddled in upon herself as Kevin staggered to his feet, backing away from her so swiftly that he bumped into someone behind him. "What are you?" he hissed lowly.

"I'm your cousin," Riyan whispered, shivering at the look in Kevin's eyes.

"No you're not." Turning quickly, Kevin shoved his way through the crowd, heading off as quickly as possible in the opposite direction.

Riyan wrapped trembling arms around herself as the crowd closed back in, hundreds of eyes staring at her with revulsion and terror. Letting her head fall forward, she rocked slowly back and forth in pain, the pain that always followed one of these episodes. She could feel her side aching dully, feel a faint echo of the pain Kevin had felt.

Someone spit on her. Riyan's head snapped up, her eyes wide. Her hands, however, were tightly clenched against her side. Someone else spit on her, as she caught the faint mutterings of insults from the people still gathered around her. Someone kicked her as they walked by, looking straight ahead as if she weren't even there.

As the crowd began to move again, Riyan stayed huddled in place, battling the rising anger and it's accompanying heat. She knew what that meant too. People may get better when she touched them with love in her heart, but if she ever reached out in hate . . .

Shuddering, Riyan wrapped her arms more tightly around her, vowing that no one would ever be hurt that way again.

Ororo Munroe had been hoping for a pleasant shopping trip. No pauses to save the world, no need to be a super hero or make life altering decisions. Today would be just her, her credit card, and a date with those boots she'd been wanting to buy for almost a month now.

Five minutes into downtown, and all hopes of a normal day vanished as she rounded a corner and stumbled across a surreal nightmare.

There were three of them. Hulking brutes--the type with more brawn then brains and no compassion whatsoever. Two of them were just pinning a young girl up against a wall, carefully avoiding her hands as she flailed about. A third was shoving his sleeves up, obviously settling in for a nice long beating.

Heat flashed before Ororo's eyes as her jaw tightened, her hands balling up into fists. She dropped the one shopping bag she'd managed to acquire and stalked forwards.

And stopped again as something extraordinary happened. The girl somehow managed to free one hand, waving it around to slap the arm of the man who still had her pinned.

He staggered back, swearing and clutching at his arm, which looked broken.

Ororo blinked.

The girl spun, her eyes wide, and pressed both hands into the second man's chest. He flew backwards into the wall, sliding down with a groan and curling one arm protectively around his chest.

Ororo took a step back as the girl advanced, reaching her hand out and placing it on the remaining man's forehead.

He staggered backwards one step--and then toppled over to the ground unconscious.

The girl turned to look at Ororo, her eyes wide with unshed tears. Before Ororo could say a word, the younger woman's eyes rolled back into her head, and she slumped to the ground.

Surveying the turmoil, Ororo sighed and pulled a phone from her pocket.

Logan smiled as he pulled the bike up to the street Ororo had reported, slowing down and bracing one leg against the ground. "Storm?"

"Oh, now that's subtle." Ororo appeared from a shadow, surveying the bike. Scott was going to kill Logan someday if he didn't stop stealing Scott's baby. "And I thought I told you to bring a car."

Logan shrugged. "This was the first thing I saw. So are you going to get on, or did I just drive down here for nothing?"

Ororo rolled her eyes, gesturing towards something Logan couldn't see. "I didn't need the ride for myself, Logan," she said patiently. "We have a slight problem here."

Killing the engine, Logan swung his leg over the bike and swaggered over to where Ororo was standing. "Who's that?"

"Someone who Xavier is going to want to meet. Very much."

"Oh." Shrugging again, Logan bent down, ready to pick the young girl up, but paused when Ororo put a hand on his shoulder. "Be careful of her hands."

"What? Is she like--"

"No," Ororo said quickly. "At least, I don't think so. But I saw her doing some pretty impossible things with her hands. Just be careful."

Logan nodded and swung the girl up into his arms, carrying her over and propping her up on the seat of the bike. "This is going to be interesting. I've never tried to drive a bike with an unconscious passenger."

"Well then. Next time someone tells you to bring a car--bring the god damned car." Ororo walked over and held the girl up as Logan swung a leg over the seat, settling in front her. Ororo produced a hair binder from somewhere and twined it around the girl's wrists, wrapping them both around Logan's waist before settling the girl's cheek against his back.

"There. She should stay on now."

"Interesting." Logan looked down to where the small hands were tied in front of him. "Who should I take her to when I get there?"

"Take her to Jean. She fell over in a dead faint--something might be wrong with her."

"Brilliant deduction." Smiling, Logan slapped up the kickstand and started the motor on the bike. "You want me to send someone else to pick you up?"

"Don't bother," Ororo responded. "I'll just finish my errands and meet you back at the school."